This was the best IAAPA ever.
Why? We got a chance to meet cool FEC owners and professionals, reconnect with partners, and create a deeper emotional connection with our most loyal customers. In short, there was a lot of love in the air.
Ever since Inbound 2018, I've been making a mental shift from the traditional sales funnel where the focus of a company is on getting new customers to the flywheel, where you the center is on attracting, engaging, and delighting customers. Since making this mental shift I've begun to see things differently.
I used to look at these industry events as a lead generation activity. Thus the primary metric to track is cost-per-lead and customer acquisition costs from offline channels.
This year, we've been more mindful and intentional about the goal of IAAPA as being our most significant customer engagement and delight activities. These experiences ranged from meeting customers for the first time at our booth.
To letting our hair down and sharing cocktails at the Fab 5 VIP Bash...
It goes without saying; there's nothing like interacting with customers face-to-face. The success metrics this year included the number of group selfies, customer testimonials, and hugs.
Throughout the show, I kept hearing positive comments and phrases like, "We love Party Center Software."
This observation got me thinking about the most crucial takeaway from IAAPA which is the answer to the question, "How do you get customers to fall in love with you?"
Whether you're a SaaS company like us or a family entertainment center, it's an essential question for everyone in our industry to figure out. As marketers (and we're all marketers these days), we aspire to build these strong emotional connections with customers through every experience.
Our ability to make customers like us and fall in love with us builds customer loyalty and advocacy that creates the momentum for growth.
From my time spent with customers and working closely with our Customer Success Team, I've observed a few things that I hope will spark some ideas for you and your business.
It all starts with your employees.
As Simon Sinek wisely said, "Customers will never love a company until the employees love it first." I've had conversations with employees who work at Disney, Apple, and HubSpot and they all say they love the company. That shows in their enthusiasm for their jobs and affects interactions with customers.
Hiring the right people is difficult, but getting them to love your company may seem like a pipe dream.
The relationship starts early on.
The experiences people have, and the relationships you build before they buy anything from you have a tremendous impact on the emotional connection. If you're causing frustration and creating negative emotions early in the relationship, it requires a significant amount of effort to right the ship.
Identify who is unhappy and do what you can to fix it.
If you're one of our customers, you may have seen surveys from me and noticed your dedicated Customer Success Manager reaching out. We want to listen, make things right, and earn your business every day.
Now over to you.
I know we have a long way to go to earning trust and the love from every single customer. You may be in a similar boat with your business and have other things you've tried. If so, please share with our community on Facebook.